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Custom Benavente '51PJ5

Discussion in 'Basses [BG]' started by Thumper, Oct 6, 2004.

  1. Thumper


    Mar 22, 2000
    Syracuse Ut
    This is a late post, my apologies to Brian at the Low End and Chris Benavente, who were so patient in helping me get my first and most likely my last custom bass. It arrived while I was on travel, and I didn’t want to submit a review until I had a chance to play it through my rig, which took another week….

    This ’51 PJ5 has a Korina body, Aero P PUP, Duncan J PUP, Benavente 3 band pre, and Hipshot Ultralights.

    It took a little bit of twiddling to dial it in, but I was able to find several sweet settings which is all I ask of any bass.

    The white Korina body has a tone all of its own. It’s similar to a mahogany, but the tone is clearer, it has a bit more and tighter lows, and brighter high-mids than other mahogany bodied basses I’ve owned. Like those basses, the highs aren’t crisp like swamp ash or maple bodies, but they are passable, and really this bass was meant to capture the essence of a vintage instrument visually and tonally, and that it does.

    As fitted, it’s a medium weight bass, but with the Ultralights there is no neck dive, and it balances wonderfully. Chris also gave me forearm and belly contours which really helps the overall comfort. I asked for the satin finish, and he matched it with a dulled black pickguard, very nice. He also moved the bridge PUP 1” towards the neck at my request.

    The preamp (with passive option) has his new spacing which puts the knobs slightly farther apart, and helps the bass appear less busy looking. I found my tone with highs and bass controls at ¾, and the mid at about 1/8, balance ¾ neck pup. It is very reminiscent of my ’66 Jazz with the balance at 50/50, and bass maxed, except for it has MUCH more punch, and better highs.

    The real surprise though is the very pleasing growl this bass has, I was going for more of a Pbass tone, but really, I’m really enjoying the Jazz bass vibe this instrument has. I’m already planning to get it into the gigging rotation. :bassist:
  2. Basso Gruvitas

    Basso Gruvitas Supporting Member

    Jun 7, 2000
    Dallas/Ft. Worth TX
    Congrats, Thumper! Hope you're very satisfied with your new axe!!
  3. JPJ


    Apr 21, 2001
    Chicago, IL
    Congrats on the new '51! :hyper:
  4. James Hart

    James Hart

    Feb 1, 2002
    Endorsing Artist: see profile
    WOW! that is sexy! I think that is my 3rd favorite looking Benavente :smug:

  5. Wilbyman


    Sep 10, 2003
    Parkersburg, WV
    I think it turned out very nicely and the matte black guard is a sweet touch. Did Aero custom make that P pu for you? Any reason you wanted a different setup than the Benavente pu's (wide/slim for instance)?

    Like Hart's '51, yours really seems to put a badass modern spin in the body shape and styling. You may be going for a vintage vibe, but I wouldn't hesitate to take it to a fusion date at all.
  6. Anti_Wish


    May 14, 2004
    Boston, Ma
  7. Thumper


    Mar 22, 2000
    Syracuse Ut
    Thanks for the comments guys! Attached is a photo with my '66J to show how the body is sized.

    Wilbyman, I like the Aero for several reasons:

    -I love the Aeros in my Elrick. IMO Aero's have a transparent sound missing in most PUPs, they tend to transmit more of the body wood tone,
    -Aeros also have a "throatiness" I like,
    -I wanted the P PUP layout with exposed pole pieces to match the bridge PUP,
    -and finally, I like how the width and length match up with the J PUP. I've never cared for how other P PUPs overwhelm J PUPs visually when on the same bass. You can't tell from these poor photo's, but both PUPs are have ebony covers.

    And you're right, I could play this bass in any setting. Except for the Elrick, I got rid of all my "coffe table" basses. I've decided plain wood or painted instruments work better for me. I never felt quite right using those exotic beauties for classic rock cover gigs which is what both of my bands do.
  8. DDXdesign

    DDXdesign formerly 'jammadave' Supporting Member

    Oct 15, 2003
    Wash DC metro area
    That's exactly what I'd get if my wallet matched my 51P GAS. =0)
  9. smperry

    smperry Administrator Staff Member Administrator Gold Supporting Member

    Nov 3, 2003
    Bay Area, CA
    Endorsing Artist: Martin Keith Guitars
    Cool bass! Thanks for the description of the wood and pickups.

  10. CaracasBass


    Jun 16, 2001
    Madrid, Spain
    Wow.....that´s nice. I know some day I´ll get one of those Benaventes. :bassist: